Archive for the ‘Society’ Category

Occupy this space

Monday, October 31st, 2011

The protesters in Central London are causing some interesting ripples in our community, and providing some uncomfortable questions to be asked. What’s partly interesting is that the Occupy London Stock Exchange (OLSE) group are not the ones asking these questions. [Read more...]

Why cycling through gangs of teenagers is bad for your (mental) health

Monday, December 13th, 2010

Here’s a good example of anti-social behaviour: my own.

Some time ago I was cycling along one of my regular routes near my home in North London. This route takes me through a great park, with football pitches, children’s playground, water play area, and outdoor gym. The park also includes a dedicated (and demarcated) cycle path as a main thoroughfare for cyclists heading to and from the north of the capital. As I was cycling along I saw ahead a gang of about 6 or 8 teenage boys standing around on the cycle path. They weren’t doing much, just standing there, chatting to each other. Right, I thought to myself, I’m not going to be forced off-course by these lot, and I hunkered down and swiftly shot through the middle of the group, in what was barely sufficient space and causing at least two of them to exclaim at my unexpected presence. A victory, I decided, even as I stopped at the traffic lights a mere 10 metres on, heart pounding, determined not to look over my shoulder, I had struck some sort of vague and poorly defined victory for common folk. But fear and/or aggression makes us do stupid things. [Read more...]